Midyear Meeting

ABA is 'ultimate resource' for lawyers, says Alpha Brady, first African American executive director

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“While we may change the way we communicate our message, the core values do not change,” ABA Executive Director Alpha Brady told the House of Delegates. (Photo by Mitch Higgins/ABA Media Relations)

ABA Executive Director Alpha M. Brady says she is “humbled and proud” of the journey that led her to taking over leadership of the American Bar Association in July 2023.

“I stand before you with immense pride and profound humility as the first African American executive director,” Brady said to a standing ovation in a speech Monday during the 2024 ABA Midyear Meeting in Louisville, Kentucky.

Brady, who joined the ABA staff in 1988, is the first African American to hold the position of executive director of the association in its 145-year history. She succeeded Jack Rives in the role. Monday was the first time she addressed the ABA House of Delegates in her new role.

Brady manages staff operations at the ABA headquarters in Chicago; the office in Washington, D.C.; and program sites in Texas, California and 60 other countries. Brady oversees the implementation of the ABA’s strategic goals and the programs adopted by the Board of Governors and House of Delegates.

Brady said that under her leadership, the ABA would commit itself to enhanced messaging, a more efficient website and further positioning as the “ultimate resource of all things legal.” Brady said the ABA will be focused on an integrative communications strategy, new and enhanced programming products, and on improving the value and delivery of its services.

Brady recommitted to the ABA’s efforts to advance the rule of law and ensure access to justice.

“While we may change the way we communicate our message, the core values do not change,” Brady said. “Our work is deeply connected to the public we serve.”

Brady said her leadership has included listening to the needs of members, challenging the ABA staff to think creatively and strategically, and fostering an environment of creativity.

See also: Meet Alpha Brady, the new ABA executive director

Follow along with the ABA Journal’s coverage of the 2024 ABA Midyear Meeting here.

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